Pretty Living: Decorating with Meaning

Hey pretties!  Today kicks off a brand new series that I’m SUPER excited about.  One of my favorite hobbies (besides creating capsule wardrobes) is home decor.  Throughout the past few years, I’ve gotten tons of requests to post more about this topic so I’ve done little bits here and there, but nothing on a regular basis. This month, I’m starting a new six-part decorating series to share some of my tidbits of decorating advice that I’ve picked up along the way.

To kick the series off right, I’m starting with one of my favorite tips – decorating with meaning.

What does it mean to decorate with meaning?  Well, I believe that your home space should be a reflection of not just your personality but also a collection of items near and dear to your heart.  Anyone can decorate with meaningless trinkets but it’s so much better to be surrounded by things with deep personal meaning.

Here are five of my favorite ways to incorporate meaning into home decor.

(FYI – I’ve linked up similar online items below, but if you’re wondering where I got any of my pieces, the answer is almost always HomeGoods, Wayfair or Target.  I’ll be linking up my furniture and lighting in future posts in this series.)

1. Family Heirlooms

This cricket rocker sat in my grandmother’s house all throughout my childhood.  My most vivid memory of it was not being allowed to sit in it because the cane seat was so fragile!  Somewhere along the way, she got the seat replaced on it and I was allowed to finally sit in it.  It was one of my favorite pieces in her home and it’s now an heirloom that I’m proud to display.

Because this rocker’s antique style doesn’t quite fit in with my modern/traditional decor, I added this monogrammed throw pillow to update it a bit.


[Monogrammed Throw Pillows]

2. Travel Trinkets

Our family has a sense of adventure and love of world travel so naturally some of our decor expresses that.  Here are a few of the ways we’ve incorporated our zest for globe-trotting into our daily lives.


[Eiffel Tower Figurine]



[Vintage Paris Maps]


[Decorative Globes]

3. Hobbies and Interests

Our daughter’s love of horses has spilled over into a few of our rooms.  Her room is completely horse themed but we’ve also managed to incorporate a few pieces of equine decor into our sitting area.

dining area

[Horse Paintings]


[Horse Figurines]

My mom was a huge Beatles fan so growing up I knew every single word to all of their albums by heart.  I’m still fascinated with the fab four as evidenced by this coffee table book of rare photographs.


[Beatles Books]

4. Nature and Outdoors

By far, our family’s favorite pastime is spending time at the beach.  Most rooms in our house have a little bit of the beach in them.  Try this out by displaying natural elements collected on some of your favorite adventures such as sea shells, pine cones, dried moss or driftwood.



5. Spiritual/Religious Meaning

When I went looking for a large piece of art to finish our our formal living room, I first started my search with colors that would bring the room together.  When I stumbled across this piece of art entitled “Revealed in Jesus, Romans 8:39” by Mark Lawrence, I knew that I had found “the one”.


Romans 8:39 New International Version (NIV)

39 neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.


[“Revealed in Jesus, Romans 8:39” Art on Canvas]

It’s Your Turn:  What are some ways that you decorate with meaning in your home?  Share them in the comments!

I Feel Pretty Link Up

It’s the day of the week at GYPO where we celebrate what makes us feel pretty. Whether it’s a new outfit, hairstyle, or makeup, the I Feel Pretty link up is about anything and everything that makes your life prettier. Even if you’re not a blogger, you can still play along. Just tell me what made you feel pretty this week in the comments.

Getting my pretty on with Style Elixir and A Little Bit of Everything.

There are just a few simple rules:

1. Follow GYPO. (Bloglovin‘, FacebookInstagram or Pinterest)

2. Link up your pretty post.

3. Link back to GYPO (using the button above or your own link).

4. Visit other pretties.




  1. Julie

    We love picking out pieces together and then remembering the experience we had finding them everytime we look at them! Love all of your decorating ideas!

    Julie |

  2. Kellyann

    I am itching to redecorate, I want to change EVERYTHING! My husband on the other hand not so much, lol. Love everything you featured!

  3. Laura

    I love all these tips! We love to travel too so incorporating things we get as souvenirs into our home is so fun for me!

  4. ADA

    Great post and tips. I love all your traveling pieces and accessories throughout your home.

  5. Amy Johnson

    I so agree with all your tips. I recently renovated my master bedroom and did a blog post about it. One of my readers commented how she liked that every thing in my room had purpose and meaning. I was like “YES!” because her comment nailed it. I gave serious thought to every single item that went into that room.

  6. Pam Ward Priester

    Love this post. Super fun and helpful to add some fresh thinking to my decor. Your home is just beautiful!!

  7. Sara Gardner

    I absolutely include items and pictures from our travels to decorate. I also use special family photos. My husband’s mom passed away a couple of months before he proposed. I make sure she is a part of our decor.

  8. Jennifer Hoffman

    I LOVE your spiritual piece! That is so meaningful. I am currently working on all of this in our home as we moved back in after being overseas. We have moved a lot and it’s hard to keep up with the decorations at each place but this helps me narrow down what to keep!

  9. Shoes to Shiraz

    Love this…everything in my house has to have a story..most of the art has been painted by someone in my family- loved seeing into your world!

    • Alison @ Get Your Pretty On

      I love the paintings by special loved ones. Such a meaningful way to decorate your home. Thank you and look for more to come! 🙂

  10. Christy Householter Fellows

    I enjoyed your post immensely! I love getting Christmas ornaments wherever we go. Then at Christmas we have such a fun time remembering! I have my grandmother’s old sewing machine that she paid for during the war. Very cool especially since I enjoy sewing. My dad and hubby both love history and I worked for the federal government for a long time so I really want a piece of art that reflects American history. Great tips! Thx for posting this!

  11. Sheila Charbonneau

    Loved this post! I have the same painting! It’s time for an update around this house, so your post was very timely for me! xo

  12. Lana L.

    Your home is lovely. Most of the pieces I decorate with have some meaning too. Love your Paris things!

  13. Sheri

    Love this post! What size is your canvas? It is beautiful and the colors I’m looking for to add to my living room. Also, is this your main living room or do you have an additional family room? Is your formal dining in another room? My front room is designed like this, but it is a combined formal living and dining. Just wondered, as we are thinking about re-arranging…

    • Alison @ Get Your Pretty On

      Hi Sheri! I got the biggest size (32″ x 48″), it’s just right! This is our formal living room. We also have a family room that’s much more relaxed and casual. Our formal was a combined living/dining but we converted the dining room into a sitting area and get SO much more use from it!

      • Sheri

        Thanks for answering my questions, Alison! Your home looks really lovely and the colors and style are very appealing!

  14. NadineNBone

    Love the Eiffel Tower & the 1906 Paris map! Looking forward to the home decor blog posts 🙂

  15. jess

    Wow I do love everything you incorporated. I lost my dad about a year ago and he was a photographer. I had some of his pictures put on canvas to remind me of him and his love for photography. Love the art on the wall and your love of horses, beautiful!
    jess xx

  16. Sarah @ Foxy's Domestic Side

    I love that you have incorporated things that have so much meaning to you. Looking forward to the rest of this series, and getting a look inside your home.

  17. Shelly @ The Queen in Between

    We love bringing back shells from the beach. I have saved several pieces from both my grandmothers and display around our house and it is so special just to have a piece of them here. All great ideas. Thanks for sharing with Royally Waiting….and for hosting your weekly linkup!

  18. Nicole Mölders

    Thanks for linking up to Top of the World Style.


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